Referral ads by Adsense
The other day I noticed in my adsense account that it had been ‘upgraded’ and that I had some new monetisation options.
Apparently its been live since June . I won’t say too much about what the program offers as much of it can be read over at the previous link, that said it might be useful to look at the headlines and make a little comment on each.
So do I like it? Yes on balance I think its pretty cool. I think it might well lead to a whole lot more writing about various products and services in the blogosphere too. Savvy bloggers who write paid reviews that pay once, might decide that it could be more lucrative to write about products for which they could be paid for multiple times.
I also touched on how it made it easier for affiliate marketers to sign up for new programs via a one code paste route, without the need to have to apply to individual programs. It’s not so much of a big deal, but it can be a little bit of PITA sometimes having to mess about with hanging around waiting to accepted into programs. Its for this reason that I love the instantaneous way in which I can select an advertiser and write about them immediately.
The ability to target individual advertisers, is a real boon for the niche blogger presenting great opportunities for well written content that performs well. Google’s huge market share in online advertising also means that I’ll have access to a consistent number of new opportunities.
As content matures and ages..
A potential downside is that if you write content that is too specific to the advertiser you are reviewing then overtime, it could become a problem. What happens if the advertiser leaves the program or goes out of business? Any content you wrote would become effectively dead.
Personally, I’ll probably stick with generic safe bets on my blogs and stick to general related topics.
Blogging for profit?
Ok, not everyone wants to monetise their blog – some people equate money and blogging as some kind of dirty word almost. Some people still like to write for the hell of it and couldn’t really give a rats arse for any kind of monetary payback. Their payback is the reward that comes from getting people involved or simply venting their spleen on a topic near and dear to them.
Its not for me to pour scorn on any money hating anti capitalistic mindset, we can all rant and rave about market inequalities and the evils of money until the cows come home, yet nothing changes the reality of life, which is, we all need the stuff and to have a productive life, we tend to get out and find ways of acquiring it. The easier that task the better no? why work for the man, when you don’t have to, or at least not as hard maybe.
Earning yourself a passive income stream
Blogging and monetising that writing is an excellent way of creating passive streams of income. Passive streams of income are like bank accounts with lots of dosh in them. You get interest monthly and you don’t have to do very much for it.
Getting affiliate cheques every month is quite a pleasant feeling, trust me. 😀
Blogging for profit isn’t like traditional methods of selling ones labour. You can actually own the means of production, which is you, yourself and sell yourself as that product. Decide upon how much you charge, how much you are paid, when you take your breaks. IOW, it really has the potential to free you from traditional forms of work. Your traffic and authority levels can truly give you what you need. All you have to do is do the leg work and build something of value.
Blog Optimisation Experimentation and Cultivating your Niche
So, having tentatively established that there isn’t anything really evil about making money from your blog/s I just wanted to share some of the programs Ive used and see if I could get a little feedback from people with regard to their own experiences.
We all know that there are lots of ways of monetising ones blog. I’ve blogged on quite a few programs and have shared some of my experiences and gave opinions too. I’ve dabbled with paid reviews, and have recently added the buy me a beer plugin too, just to see if anyone actually uses the thing. After all it cost me $0.00 and took me 22 seconds to install. If I get one beer bought for me, I’m quids in 😀
It is very much early days for me. Many of my past web monetisation efforts have been in affiliate market sectors outside of the blogosphere. This is kinda cool though really, because Ive learnt a great deal about what it takes to get traffic and getting people to click through to stuff and funneling them along various paths which is absolutely central to any monetisation aim. I’m continually experimenting with the blogs I use and the methods I employ too, you have to, why wouldn’t you even, call it BO (Blog Optimisation) without any stink.
It’s a well known fact that some markets are definitely more lucrative than others. People also tend to guard their niches with their lives, as a saturated niche becomes that much harder to play in and compete with.
Every niche is different. Different people interact in different ways dependant upon what they are after. If you can ID those behaviours and tap them in to what you do and how and why you do it, then that’s a very good start in understanding what they are all about; as obvious as it is to say, it needs to be said nonetheless knowing your readership and giving them what they want is a key component in successfully monetising your blogging efforts. Sure, you can’t be all things to all men, but you can certainly be the populist and appeal to your greatest constituency.
Blog Monetization feedback
I put up a little poll recently and some of my readers have clicked on the ‘other’ option. Perhaps I should have added other options that covered the various sponsored blog type options that exist. Sponsored Reviews , Pay Per Post, ReviewMe then there is the buy-me-a beer thing that seems to have gotten people chin wagging all over the shop, ebay and Amazon, auctionAds, Azoogle and a few more I’ve probably forgotten about already.
I don’t have one to hand, but it would be kind of useful to have a list of all the various programs out there today and hear of peoples experiences with them. None of those check out my affiliate link type posts please, I’ll delete those in a heartbeat, but if you do have some experience of a program that you’ve used and are really happy with or sad with even! Then I’d love to hear all about it.
Maybe a quick Pros and Cons type comment even.
Communiques of impending doom
According to Jensense Google are going to be disabling adsense accounts that are being used for MFA type sites.
Numerous AdSense publishers have been receiving emails from Google the past couple of days stating that their use of their AdSense account is an unsuitable business model and that accounts would be disabled as of June 1st, giving publishers about two weeks notice to prepare for the loss of the AdSense accounts
That’s big news, especially if you are one of these people who have gotten kind of comfortable earning what seemed to be a relatively easy buck.
Arbitrage in a nutshell
For those of you who don’t know what it is and how it all worked, the short explanation is that you’d build a site designed to get clicks from users on your adsense ads and earn a buck.
How you obtained the traffic varied. Some people used PPC (pay per click) programs to buy clicks at the lowest possible rate and filtered them through to a site with ads that attracted a higher payback. So if you paid $.05 for a click and got $.06 upwards back then you’d make a profit.
Google being the largest PPC player on the block means that exclusion from their program leaves a smaller pie to play with.
So what who cares, did anyone die?
Is there anything inherently wrong with this practice? Well, Google seem to think so, else why would they take this action. yet, it has to be said that people do similar things in different ways and different markets. Its called Capitalism.
It remains to be seen whether similar programs will take similar actions. They all make vsrious public pronouncements about how they like to protect their advertisers and add value to them and all that old hype, yet the reality is that in the case of Google for example they’ve happily just let the pennies roll on in for some years now without any real meaningful steps to curtail the process.
One can only speculate as to what actually drove this decision. A call to arms to clean up the SERPs perhaps? A cry from advertisers sick of low quality traffic. A general why should an external marketer be allowed to profit from our system using two sides of the same coin even. Who knows.
The bottom line is that the game has changed yet again.
Dealing with it and taking remedial steps
If you are a thin affiliate for example with product feeds and general low quality ‘find it everywhere else’ kind of content with adsense thrown in for good measure, then perhaps you too could find yourself on the receiving end of one of these unwelcoming letters.
Of course it could just be a public purge designed to bolster waning perceptions of ad quality and policing. Advertiser confidence is key to the success of any program. Advertisers using the adsense network don’t want to have low quality shitty visitors to their sites from people who had no alternative other than to click an advert, the view being that this type o traffic simply doesn’t convert. If advertiser confidence in the adsense network is improved then it follows that more will participate. More participants equals more revenue of course.
I can understand this too. On sites I run, Ive opted out of the adsense network from the off, simply because of all the low quality non converting crap I used to receive.
Don’t get me wrong, the adsense network can be great from a brand building and getting your url out there perspective, and it really does depend too on what kind of market sector you operate in. The big arber sharks of this world tend to target the highest paying keywords as these offer the biggest payback for them, perhaps an additional problem has been that as more people have gotten in on the act, this net has increasingly expanded downwards with arbers being forced into going for the smaller paying terms as the larger ones margins were squeezed.
On days like this, I’m glad I’m not an arber 🙂
Earning money from your website or blog
This piece isn’t aimed at the uber serious long toothed web marketer, its aimed at people new to it all, people who are just seeking new or different perspectives on monetising their websites.
Adsense – Most of us know what it is, some of us do exceptionally well with it too. The stories about people commonly earning in excess of $10,000 dollars a month really are very true. Trust me, I know, Ive been there and worked with single domain sites that pulled in figures above and beyond,in the right niche its very much achievable.
I like Michael’s videos not only because he knows what he’s talking about but because he presents in a non hyped up way. He also has a great balance between showing the potential that someone using AdSense can earn with it but also making it clear that it’s not ‘easy’ money (ie it takes hard work).
Darren Rowse was refering to Michael Cheneys adsense videos , a product I haven’t looked at personally, but as I trust Darren’s judgement I’m happy to go with what he says on it. I’m not going to purchase them though, because well, besides the bighead view of I doubt it would show me that much more than what I already know, I just don’t have the time right now either, Im too busy blogging and doing other day to day work stuff.
I was just over at tech crunch reading some of the broohah about some deal that fell through regarding performancing and payperpost and was kinda surpised at the level of snorting and derision being applied there. There is this guy named Ted, who like most people trying to get things off of the floor in life has managed to obtain $3 million dollars in funding for an idea, which he feels might just fly. So far he has managed to stir up a bit of controversy, with various high profile people like Matt Cutts coming out against the idea in general.
So ok, I can see why a search engine might have an issue with squillions of bloggers being paid to promote and talk about things using keyword rich anchor text to distort the search landscape but thats just tough I guess, they’ll find a way to deal with it, or mightn’t bother even, hardly the end of the world for
mfa sites adsense now is it. Besides what with all this talk about mature algos and whatnot, I doubt it’ll make a huge difference anyways, a storm in a teacup even? Perhaps, or maybe some might see it as the thin end of a wedge. The lines get a little blurred when you think ahead and envisage a SERP full of results containing blogs that have been written on the basis of some monetary consideration. In those scenarios, where would the distinction between paid ads and paid ads masquerading as free serps be drawn? Should the search engine be held accountable for its editorial decisions?
This could be kinda cool for publishers. Caydel reports that Google is beta testing keyword based ad filtering. Publishers will be able to input negative keywords so that low priced cpm or cpc ads won’t show…
Hmmn, interesting eh? How many times have you seen ads that made you think what’s all that about then, a 0.07 cent ad how cool, not!
I’m hardly a PPC or adsense expert but Ive played with both so can see a few advantages and disadvantages here.
For advertisers, dependant upon take up and use, couldn’t this well push up costs? As publishers exclude low cost kw’s from appearing, then there would as a consequence be less playgrounds to play in. Less exposure = less clicks = less revenue/higher cost conversions overall…no? It would also have an impact on the adwords/adsense arbitragers out there too. It’ll sure squeeze their capacity to get that ultra low cost traffic.
As far as publishers go, would it be all good? Or could they overstep the mark and exclude too many kw’s, just to be left with PSA’s or alt url ad outputs.
Will be an interesting one to watch!